Mountain towns in Morocco were devastated by the quake

As we rounded the last turn of the winding road and pulled up in the Moroccan mountain town of Moulay Brahim, it was clear right away that we had come to a place where the Friday night earthquake had killed many people.

An old woman stumbled toward us, crying and holding her head in her hands.

A group of young guys were crying not far away. They had just found out that one of the dead was their friend.

“There have been so many deaths today,” one of the guys said.

“Our friend was devastated. He was so young when we buried him today.

Another man, Mohamed, who is working to set up this makeshift response, said that 16 people had already been buried in this village alone. On Saturday, their bodies were found in the rubble. On Sunday, two more people will be laid to rest.

“Since it happened, we’ve worked every minute. Since then, I haven’t stopped,” he said. “Only about 10 people work here, and we’re trying to find people in the houses. It’s a last resort.”

A few minutes later, people from the Red Crescent came and gave them some hope. But this is a disaster that calls for a much larger and more coordinated reaction.

“We have nothing here,” Mohamed said. “We need everything,” she said. Food, medicine, and a place to live.

Many parts of the High Atlas Mountains are showing this scene of damage and hopelessness.

From Marrakesh up to the remote hillside, it took us 90 minutes to drive in a zigzag pattern. Boulders and rocks along the way made it harder for us to see where we were going.

Broken and blocked roads have made it very hard to save people. Teams have spread out from the big cities, especially Marrakesh, to try to reach the worst-hit areas and pull people out of the rubble.

During our trip, a line of vehicles sped by us, taking us deeper into the unknown. Aerial footage has shown us what these emergency services will have to deal with, but it’s still too early to know how many people have died.

If miracles are going to happen in the next few hours, they will need heavy-lifting tools. Not only in Moulay Brahim, but also in a lot of other places. Only so much can be done with hands and tools.

Back in Marrakesh, many people have been sleeping outside for a second night. People of all ages have been wrapped in blankets and put in roundabouts, parking lots, and a public area.

But it looks like few people are sleeping, at least not well. Even though being outside is safer, the fear of what another wave could do doesn’t go away.

Many streets in this old city are full of debris, but Marrakesh has done better than the mountainous places to the south and west.

Safa El Hakym, the owner of a restaurant, is trying to assess the damage.

She says, “Thank God it’s just the walls and stuff that are gone.” “We haven’t lost what’s most important.

“And thank God, we have the power of humanity in Morocco: we are all working together, putting our hearts into this, and helping each other.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *